1/9/12

Confused, lost, need directions...?


This is so confusing I actually understand it.  Suppose you are on a major road (going north) that is going to separate into two other ones and as it does you are currently in the right lane.  You want to go East (which would be on the right), so you exit left and follow the road as it goes underneath the road you were formerly on and then goes right (East).  Confused?  I don't blame you!!!  Other than this little convoluted explanation, the sign makes no sense at all.  But, I understand that this could happen, so why not accept its possibility and go with it.  Akin to this, we find in our Bibles, the book of Revelation and its apparently confusing imagery.  Take a moment and read these few verses and see if the direction it takes you makes sense...

WEB: Revelation of John Chapter 1

[1] This is the Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show to his servants the things which must happen soon, which he sent and made known by his angel to his servant, John, [2] who testified to God’s word, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, about everything that he saw.

[3] Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of the prophecy, and keep the things that are written in it, for the time is at hand.

[4] John, to the seven assemblies that are in Asia: Grace to you and peace, from God, who is and who was and who is to come; and from the seven Spirits who are before his throne; [5] and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us, and washed us from our sins by his blood; [6] and he made us to be a Kingdom, priests to his God and Father; to him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

[7] Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, including those who pierced him. All the tribes of the earth will mourn over him. Even so, Amen.

[8] "“I am the Alpha and the Omega,”" says the Lord God, "“who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”"

[9] I John, your brother and partner with you in oppression, Kingdom, and perseverance in Christ Jesus, was on the isle that is called Patmos because of God’s Word and the testimony of Jesus Christ. [10] I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, like a trumpet [11] saying, "“What you see, write in a book and send to the seven assemblies: to Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.”"

Pet peeve here... it is the Revelation of Jesus Christ, not of John.  While I am at it, it is not Revelations, its REVELATION.  Good! That is over; I have vented for the day!!!!  But, what I really wanted to mention is that the events of this revelation were to happen soon.  The language used in the book is primarily symbolic and not literal because being literal would have been easily understood by the Roman government of the day and resulted in the extermination of all the Christians.  The seven churches were real congregations and the problem was real, but the language is figurative.  Is this confusing or what?  That is the idea, confuse those who probably would have never read the Old Testament prophets and say what you will.  Today, people make all sorts of crazy predictions and outlandish comments on this book that I have to wonder if they have ever read the Old Testament at all.  But, know this; just as I was thinking of an actual road when I explained the odd road marker above, so the Christians of the first century would have understood their reality coupled with the Old Testament Scriptures.  The clear message of Revelation is that God will overcome all evil (including the mighty Roman Empire) and in the end Christians will find joy, peace and eternal life with God.  Can you say these things about your life?  Need directions?  Just ask; I will be glad to show you the signposts....

OT Bible Reading 1/9/12


Jan. 9
Genesis 9


Gen 9:1 God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them, "Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.
Gen 9:2 The fear of you and the dread of you will be on every animal of the earth, and on every bird of the sky. Everything that the ground teems with, and all the fish of the sea are delivered into your hand.
Gen 9:3 Every moving thing that lives will be food for you. As the green herb, I have given everything to you.
Gen 9:4 But flesh with its life, its blood, you shall not eat.
Gen 9:5 I will surely require your blood of your lives. At the hand of every animal I will require it. At the hand of man, even at the hand of every man's brother, I will require the life of man.
Gen 9:6 Whoever sheds man's blood, his blood will be shed by man, for God made man in his own image.
Gen 9:7 Be fruitful and multiply. Bring forth abundantly in the earth, and multiply in it."
Gen 9:8 God spoke to Noah and to his sons with him, saying,
Gen 9:9 "As for me, behold, I establish my covenant with you, and with your offspring after you,
Gen 9:10 and with every living creature that is with you: the birds, the livestock, and every animal of the earth with you, of all that go out of the ship, even every animal of the earth.
Gen 9:11 I will establish my covenant with you: all flesh will not be cut off any more by the waters of the flood, neither will there ever again be a flood to destroy the earth."
Gen 9:12 God said, "This is the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations:
Gen 9:13 I set my rainbow in the cloud, and it will be for a sign of a covenant between me and the earth.
Gen 9:14 It will happen, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the rainbow will be seen in the cloud,
Gen 9:15 and I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh, and the waters will no more become a flood to destroy all flesh.
Gen 9:16 The rainbow will be in the cloud. I will look at it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth."
Gen 9:17 God said to Noah, "This is the token of the covenant which I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth."
Gen 9:18 The sons of Noah who went forth from the ship were Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Ham is the father of Canaan.
Gen 9:19 These three were the sons of Noah, and from these, the whole earth was populated.
Gen 9:20 Noah began to be a farmer, and planted a vineyard.
Gen 9:21 He drank of the wine and got drunk. He was uncovered within his tent.
Gen 9:22 Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brothers outside.
Gen 9:23 Shem and Japheth took a garment, and laid it on both their shoulders, went in backwards, and covered the nakedness of their father. Their faces were backwards, and they didn't see their father's nakedness.
Gen 9:24 Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his youngest son had done to him.
Gen 9:25 He said, "Canaan is cursed. He will be servant of servants to his brothers."
Gen 9:26 He said, "Blessed be Yahweh, the God of Shem. Let Canaan be his servant.
Gen 9:27 May God enlarge Japheth. Let him dwell in the tents of Shem. Let Canaan be his servant."
Gen 9:28 Noah lived three hundred fifty years after the flood.
Gen 9:29 All the days of Noah were nine hundred fifty years, then he died.

NT Bible reading 1/9, 1/10, 2012


Jan. 9,10
Matthew 5

Mat 5:1 Seeing the multitudes, he went up onto the mountain. When he had sat down, his disciples came to him.
Mat 5:2 He opened his mouth and taught them, saying,
Mat 5:3 "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.
Mat 5:4 Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Mat 5:5 Blessed are the gentle, for they shall inherit the earth.
Mat 5:6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled.
Mat 5:7 Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.
Mat 5:8 Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Mat 5:9 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called children of God.
Mat 5:10 Blessed are those who have been persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.
Mat 5:11 "Blessed are you when people reproach you, persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
Mat 5:12 Rejoice, and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven. For that is how they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Mat 5:13 "You are the salt of the earth, but if the salt has lost its flavor, with what will it be salted? It is then good for nothing, but to be cast out and trodden under the feet of men.
Mat 5:14 You are the light of the world. A city located on a hill can't be hidden.
Mat 5:15 Neither do you light a lamp, and put it under a measuring basket, but on a stand; and it shines to all who are in the house.
Mat 5:16 Even so, let your light shine before men; that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.
Mat 5:17 "Don't think that I came to destroy the law or the prophets. I didn't come to destroy, but to fulfill.
Mat 5:18 For most certainly, I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not even one smallest letter or one tiny pen stroke shall in any way pass away from the law, until all things are accomplished.
Mat 5:19 Whoever, therefore, shall break one of these least commandments, and teach others to do so, shall be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven; but whoever shall do and teach them shall be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Mat 5:20 For I tell you that unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, there is no way you will enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.
Mat 5:21 "You have heard that it was said to the ancient ones, 'You shall not murder;' and 'Whoever shall murder shall be in danger of the judgment.'
Mat 5:22 But I tell you, that everyone who is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment; and whoever shall say to his brother, 'Raca!' shall be in danger of the council; and whoever shall say, 'You fool!' shall be in danger of the fire of Gehenna.
Mat 5:23 "If therefore you are offering your gift at the altar, and there remember that your brother has anything against you,
Mat 5:24 leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.
Mat 5:25 Agree with your adversary quickly, while you are with him in the way; lest perhaps the prosecutor deliver you to the judge, and the judge deliver you to the officer, and you be cast into prison.
Mat 5:26 Most certainly I tell you, you shall by no means get out of there, until you have paid the last penny.
Mat 5:27 "You have heard that it was said, 'You shall not commit adultery;'
Mat 5:28 but I tell you that everyone who gazes at a woman to lust after her has committed adultery with her already in his heart.
Mat 5:29 If your right eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out and throw it away from you. For it is more profitable for you that one of your members should perish, than for your whole body to be cast into Gehenna.
Mat 5:30 If your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off, and throw it away from you. For it is more profitable for you that one of your members should perish, than for your whole body to be cast into Gehenna.
Mat 5:31 "It was also said, 'Whoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorce,'
Mat 5:32 but I tell you that whoever puts away his wife, except for the cause of sexual immorality, makes her an adulteress; and whoever marries her when she is put away commits adultery.
Mat 5:33 "Again you have heard that it was said to them of old time, 'You shall not make false vows, but shall perform to the Lord your vows,'
Mat 5:34 but I tell you, don't swear at all: neither by heaven, for it is the throne of God;
Mat 5:35 nor by the earth, for it is the footstool of his feet; nor by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King.
Mat 5:36 Neither shall you swear by your head, for you can't make one hair white or black.
Mat 5:37 But let your 'Yes' be 'Yes' and your 'No' be 'No.' Whatever is more than these is of the evil one.
Mat 5:38 "You have heard that it was said, 'An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.'
Mat 5:39 But I tell you, don't resist him who is evil; but whoever strikes you on your right cheek, turn to him the other also.
Mat 5:40 If anyone sues you to take away your coat, let him have your cloak also.
Mat 5:41 Whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two.
Mat 5:42 Give to him who asks you, and don't turn away him who desires to borrow from you.
Mat 5:43 "You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor, and hate your enemy.'
Mat 5:44 But I tell you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who mistreat you and persecute you,
Mat 5:45 that you may be children of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the just and the unjust.
Mat 5:46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Don't even the tax collectors do the same?
Mat 5:47 If you only greet your friends, what more do you do than others? Don't even the tax collectors do the same?
Mat 5:48 Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

Rejoice Always by Mark Copeland

http://executableoutlines.com/text/1th5_16.htm

An exhortation worth remembering... Gary